Item description for A Testament of Devotion by Thomas R. Kelly...
Overview Offers a Quaker perspective on the everyday experiences of a spiritual life
Publishers Description Since its first publication in 1941, A Testament of Devotion, by the renowned Quaker teacher Thomas Kelly, has been universally embraced as a truly enduring spiritual classic. Plainspoken and deeply inspirational, it gathers together five compelling essays that urge us to center our lives on God's presence, to find quiet and stillness within modern life, and to discover the deeply satisfying and lasting peace of the inner spiritual journey. As relevant today as it was a half-century ago, A Testament of Devotion is the ideal companion to that highest of all human arts-the lifelong conversation between God and his creatures.I have in mind something deeper than the simplification of our external programs, our absurdly crowded calendars of appointments through which so many pantingly and frantically gasp. These do become simplified in holy obedience, and the poise and peace we have been missing can really be found. But there is a deeper, an internal simplification of the whole of one's personality, stilled, tranquil, in childlike trust listening ever to Eternity's whisper, walking with a smile into the dark."
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Reviews - What do customers think about A Testament of Devotion?
Pure Essence of Spirituality - Condensed Quaker Belief Aug 1, 2006
I read this book 25 years ago and find that it gives me a feeling of the Inner Light and grounds me in what the spiritual life is all about. It is deeply Christian and yet can resonate with anyone who feels God as a living reality in all religions or no religion. It also touches upon what the Quakers call "consensus", how to let the guiding of the Spirit lead people into an understanding filled agreement about how to live, to heal, and to forgive. I have read other Quaker books, but it seems everything is here in this book. It uses less words than all the others and says everything.
Inner Peace May 5, 2006
What a beautiful book!! It you are into contemplative prayer, or have devoted a significant part of your life to meditation on God's purpose and direction, this book summarizes your life. Kelly has an amazing ability to describe the joys of inner peace, sifting the things of the world beyond through the sieve of the world within. Inspirational and delightful - enjoy.
humbling Feb 18, 2006
Not many books cause me to want to be quiet and small. Welcome to reading Thomas Kelly's A Testament of Devotion. Simple, profound Kelly invites us to an inner journey into the presence of the holy. Words fail-buy it
The best 25 cents I ever spent... Oct 3, 2005
I bought this book (the original 1941 version) for 25 cents at a used book store. When I go through a day and find too many plates spinning with several threatening to fall and crash, this book never fails help me find a calmer place from which to work.
Here's two of my favorite passages:
"Our professional status, our social obligations, our membership in this or that very important organization, put claims upon us. And in frantic fidelity we try to meet at least the necessary minimum of calls upon us. But we're weary and breathless. And we know and regret that our life is slipping away, with our having tasted so little of the peace and joy and serenity we are persuaded it should yeild to a soul of wide caliber. The times for the deeps of the silences of the heart seem so few...
"We haven't been able to say No to them, because they seemed so important. But if we center down, as the old phrase goes, and live in that holy Silence which is dearer than life, and take our life program into the silent places of the heart, with complete openness, ready to do, ready to renounce according to His leading, then many of the things we are doing lose their vitality for us...There is a reevaluation of much that we do or try to do, which is done for us, and we know what to do and what to let alone."
I think that even the non-christian would find the book helpful and offer this quote as evidence of the open beauty of the the book:
"The Inner LIght, the Inward Christ, is no mere doctrine, belonging peculiarly to a small religious fellowship, to be accepted or rejected as a mere belief. It is the living Center of Reference for all Christian souls and Christian groups--yes, and of non-Christian groups as well--who seriously mean to dwell in the secret place of the Most High. He is the center and source of action, not the end-point of thought. He is the locus of commitment, not a problem for debate."
If you've read a few of my reviews, read my book, been to my website, or have seen me as a patient, then you probably know that I consider peace to be an important part of keeping excellent health. I've found this book to be an excellent description of how to find peace.
Charles Runels, MD Author of "Anytime...for as Long as You Want: Strength, Genius, Libido, & Erection by Integrative Sex Transmutation"
Quaker Spirituality May 30, 2005
If you are interested in Quaker mysticism, please read this book, the thoughts of a 20th century Quaker mystic and teacher.
Thomas Kelly lived briefly - reading this work brings the reader close to Kelly's experiential relationships with the Divine.
There was not enough writing left behind - this is a treasure. A book for meditation and reading, Kelly's words have a way of bringing the Light to the dedicated reader.
I really love this book and don't know how to express that without sounding trivial. It can take your breath away, bring you to joyful tears and encourage your seeking.